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Aircraft vital to company's success

Entrepreneur credits Cessna TTx with responsive service

Roland Betker’s patented cam-and-roller design allows his standalone, self-supporting doors to open and close quickly. The hydraulic doors are easy to install and maintain and can be custom-built for any building.

When Roland Betker learned to weld as a young man, he never expected to use his skills to reinvent the hangar door, creating one that entirely self-supports its own weight and is custom-built to fit any opening. Betker developed his prototype in 2008. Today, his company, Higher Power Hydraulic Doors, has grown considerably, serving customers worldwide. Betker knows exactly how to keep his widespread customers happy, and he has the tool to do it—a high-performance piston-engine aircraft, his Cessna® TTx®.

“Our aircraft is a tool. It’s not just sitting here collecting dust. Our number one mission for the TTx is servicing our customers, from installing our product to responding to mechanical issues. When a customer calls, the TTx allows us to be responsive. If we have the part here, we’ll throw it in the airplane and go see our customer,” he said.

Betker also uses the aircraft to reach customers during the initial installation as well as to make sales visits to prospective customers.

Roland Betker flies his Cessna TTx 20–30 hours a month to service customers in the U.S., Canada and the Bahamas.

The fastest fixed-gear piston aircraft in its class, the Cessna TTx allows Betker to reach customers quickly as well as land at nearby, small town airports.

“The TTx lets us go wherever our customers are. I’ve actually flown down to the Bahamas to repair a door. It’s a lot faster than my Mooney and the Cessna® 172 (Skyhawk®) that I originally trained in years ago. My first solo flight after I earned my license was from Benton Harbor to Indianapolis in a 172. It took one-and-a-half hours each way. In the TTx, it’s about 35 minutes,” said Betker, who has logged some 600 hours in the Cessna TTx.

With the aircraft’s 1,250-nautical-mile range, non-stop, cross-country trips to Florida are routine for Betker.

“We have a lot of customers in Florida. The range on the TTx is great. I can just take off and go. I don’t have to plan a fuel stop half way. Stopping takes time—time on the ground and time to descend from altitude and climb back up to altitude. It also takes more fuel,” he said.

“One of the big advantages of the TTx is its six-hour range. I can go from Benton Harbor, Michigan to south Florida non-stop.”Roland Betker, Cessna TTx owner and pilot

Heavier than his Mooney, the Cessna TTx feels stable and performs well in all types of weather, according to Betker, while the Garmin G2000 avionics make flying easy.

“I like the way the Garmin G2000 is laid out with the FMS keypad,” he said.

“A pilot friend of mine flew my TTx for a few minutes. The first thing he said is, ‘Man, this thing is responsive.’”Roland Betker, Cessna TTx owner and pilot

As Betker reflects back, he credits owning an aircraft for much of his company’s success.

“We have to have an aircraft in our business. It’s a necessity. How else would we reach all of our customers so quickly? There aren’t airline flights into all of the towns. We would be on the road constantly. Only an aircraft can allow us to offer this level of responsive customer service,” he said.

“The TTx is an investment in our company. It’s definitely worth it. It’s our second most important tool—the first being our employees.”